Baby left at hospital, apparently under safe haven lawby Greta Cunningham, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — A 3-day-old baby is in foster care after being dropped off at Children's Hospital in St. Paul.
The baby was apparently left under what's known as Minnesota's "safe haven" law. That law allows mothers to anonymously give up their unwanted newborns with no legal consequences.
Authorities say the baby is healthy, and was turned over to Ramsey County child protection services after being dropped off Saturday. It's unclear whether the mother herself dropped off the baby.
Laurie Krupp is the executive director of Safe Place for Newborns, which promotes the safe haven law. She says 48 other states have similar laws.
"It's a last-ditch effort to stand between a mother who would make a choice to leave her child in a trash can or dangerous place," said Krupp. "The main thing mothers want to know is that the law is really true. And they really want us to understand that they're not a bad person."
An informal survey of Minnesota hospitals last April showed that at least 12, and possibly as many as 14 newborns had been dropped off at emergency rooms since January 2000.
For mothers in need of help, a 24-hour hotline can be reached at 877-440-2229.
(The Associated Press contributed to this report)
- Morning Edition, 02/05/2008, 8:40 a.m.